Mindful monologues to awaken your consciousness and nourish your soul.
In this introspective podcast, I aim offer you heartfelt rumination to inspire your own growth and self-discovery.
Are you seeking deeper meaning, truth, purpose or peace in your life? Join me as I unfold observations and awareness along the spiritual path - what I have learned, struggled with, found insight into.
Let these moving soliloquies gently prompt self-inquiry as you contemplate the deeper questions we all face: why do you suffer? How can you cultivate more inner calm and wisdom?
There is no dogma here, only my pondering as I illuminate and ponder our shared experiences living.
My hope is that by modeling raw exploration rooted in courageously questioning “why?”, these thoughtful meanderings awaken self-understanding and nourish your soul.
Consider these unconventional audio journal entries as a way to inspire and awaken your own internal wise teacher, taking your hand to guide you in looking within your own mysterious inner landscape in a new way. Feel less alone. Find inspiration to expand your self-awareness and consciousness with me each week.
The Union Path Podcast
"Bringing Together Heart, Mind, and Body"
John Coleman 0:00:20
Sometimes when there's something that we want, especially something that's important to us, especially something that feels like a dream, feels like a big desire it can be possible that parts of us aren't really aligned with this desire, with this dream or at least aren't aligned yet. And we can observe this, we can observe this in ourselves that sometimes our heart wants something that for whatever reason our mind and our body just really isn't ready for, maybe doesn't actually want that isn't a shared desire with all parts of ourselves. I think this is an interesting incongruence to look at, an interesting thing to pay attention to because sometimes we can want something and feel frustrated by not getting it. But if we look a little bit more deeply at ourselves, we'll find the obstacles, we'll find the blocks, we'll find the resistance against what we want within ourselves. If we really sit with this desire we may find there's path of our thinking that is actually working in opposition to it. We may have beliefs, we may just have habits of thought that run counter to whatever this desire is. We may also have a feeling sense in our body that we're not really comfortable with this desire. It feels kind of squirmy. It feels kind of itchy. It feels there's something just not settled about it that our body isn't really comfortable with this idea yet. But it's true that the heart wants what it wants. And perhaps some of this discomfort, some of this conflict is because the way we've conceptualized our desire, the way we've interpreted the feeling of desire and created a vision, created an idea out of it. Maybe that vision and that idea isn't exactly right. Because the thing about desire is that it really is rooted in feeling. We want something because we want to feel a certain way.
John Coleman 0:02:38
And sometimes when we desire a feeling we'll grasp after the first thing that seems like it might deliver that feeling to us. It's kind of like if you've ever watched someone use a piece of software or a website for the first time. The most common, the most often thing to happen is that the person doesn't actually look at every single option, doesn't read every single button, every single line of text and then make the best informed decision out of all available options. Usually it's more about clicking on the first thing that seems like it might be what they want. And we see this in life too. Like even though we like to think we're these hyper rational, planning, logical beings, a lot of times we're actually just jumping from thing to thing to thing on whatever seems like it might feel the best right now. There's nothing wrong with this. This is human nature. This is simply what we do. We're not meant to be purely logical. Life doesn't follow a well worn linear path, especially over a longer time frame. Life really kind of looks more like a spiral really kind of jumps from here to there to everywhere. That life very rarely consists of long straight lines. But when there's something we want when there's a deep heartfelt desire and we sense that parts of ourselves aren't really on board, aren't really aligned we feel a conflict, we feel some resistance there. This is something worthy to explore, worthy to get curious about and worthy to ask ourselves is this desire the right thing for us?
John Coleman 0:04:25
If we really sit with it, if we really ponder it, if we really visualize it and we can feel that spark we can feel that aliveness we can feel that luminance, that glow coming from imagining ourselves living this desire. I'm having this desire made manifest in our reality. And odds are this is something that's right for us or at the very least it is something worthy to pursue as a next step as what to try next, as what to aspire after next as what to endeavor toward next and then see what happens then maybe we achieve it, maybe we don't and we learn something. But at the very least if this desire is strong if we feel a magnetism to it if we feel a natural pull if we imagine ourselves living this experience or this desire and we feel like a more full version of ourselves we feel like a more alive version of ourselves the that pursuit is a worthy one. That pursuit is a justified one. And so if we still have this conflict we still have some things in our thinking that aren't quite aligned then it's worthwhile to look at our thinking and even more than that look at how our thinking manifests in habits of behavior. A really simple example and this can get a little tricky but at least on the face of it it's a simple idea. An easy thing to understand is that if it's much more prosperous lifestyle a much more prosperous, abundant life that we desire but we have all sorts of habits around frugality around scrimping and saving around always doing and being as little as we possibly can, always saving as much as we possibly can, and always spending as little as we can, both financially and likely physically. Trying to take up as little space as possible, trying to be as efficient as possible. And of course inherently there's nothing wrong with this. It's good to be responsible. It's good to be efficient. It's good to know what you want. Waste is never virtuous in and of itself. We can learn a lot from waste.
John Coleman 0:06:55
We can learn a lot from wasting our time, wasting our resources, wasting our money, wasting our lives. It can be really useful. It can be really helpful. But in and of itself there's really no virtue there. But it is really more about habits. It is really more about default perspective. It is really more about our general approach to life and is that aligned? Is that in congruence with what we want? Because when it comes to something like prosperity, like abundance, there's two sides to it, right? There's both the side of receiving and the side of giving. Or we could look at it another way, the side of accumulating and the side of spending. And it's easy to get resistance on one of these sides. It can be really difficult for some of us to actually be able to receive. We can observe ourselves. How do we act when someone tries to give us something?
John Coleman 0:08:03
How do we act when someone tries to offer us something? Is our default response no. Is our default response try to give them something instead? Does receiving a gift make us uncomfortable? Do we feel somehow unworthy? Do we feel somehow this might upset the balance in a relationship that might feel a little tenuous? How good are we at receiving? Really? Then we can look at the other side of it. How good are we at spending or giving? How easy it is it for us to give to someone else unprompted, not needing credit? The gift in and of itself is enough. We do it because we want to. We do it because it feels good, not because we're going to get anything back. We're not giving just to get.
John Coleman 0:08:56
We can actually give freely. And so when we look at both sides, this idea of giving and receiving or accumulating and spending, we can really see that there's a flow to it. That for every out there has to be an in. For every in there has to be an out. We don't want energy to stagnate. We don't actually want things to just accrete and accumulate for no reason, for no value. Life wants to flow. Life wants to move forward. And we can do ourselves a lot of favors by flowing with life the best we can, by really, in large measure, getting out of the way, not being resistant to gifts, not being resistant to giving, putting as few of our own personal clogs in the way of the flow of life, the flow of creation that runs through giving and receiving. It's a simple analogy. It's kind of like if you're running an airport and you only allow planes to land but you don't allow them to leave, obviously that's going to cause a lot of problems. That's going to cause a bit of a gluttony problem. That's going to cause a backup, that's going to cause a congestion because you're not allowing things to flow. Conversely, if you only allow planes to leave but you don't allow them to land, well, you're going to run out of planes pretty quickly. You're going to run into a starvation problem, kind of the opposite of your accumulation problem.
John Coleman 0:10:42
A well run airport allows planes to land freely and leave freely. Doesn't try to hold on to them, doesn't try to accumulate them, doesn't try to hold them off either. So simplistic analogies aside, it's important to look at ourselves, look at our desires and see how in line we are really looking at it through the dimension of our thinking, our habits and our behavior. Because oftentimes how we do one thing is how we tend to do most things. Especially the things that are important to us, especially things that really matter. We can learn a lot about ourselves by observing what we typically do, how we typically behave, how we typically respond to whatever's happening to us. And if it's abundance that we're trying to create, if it's prosperity that we're trying to create then it's interesting to look at ourselves from both sides of that equation, from the giving and the receiving. The same goes with relationships as well. Relationships have almost an identical quality of flow, of giving and receiving. And we can move ourselves a lot closer to the relationships that we want by looking at how good we are, how open we are, how free we are with both our giving and our receiving. But if there's something that our heart wants, if there's something deep inside of us a strong desire, a strong calling, a strong pull and we find that actually our thinking and our behavior does seem to be aligned with this, but there's something in our body that just doesn't feel comfortable with it, that we try to envision it. We can't really stick with it, we can't really stay in it. We want to separate ourselves from it. We can't imagine ourselves living out the circumstance, actually looking through our eyes. We see ourselves farther away.
John Coleman 0:12:50
We see ourselves like we're watching ourselves in a movie. And the more uncomfortable we are with it, the further away we are either the further pulled back or the further up in the air. There's something keeping us from really being able to inhabit this. That's a really useful exercise. That if there's something that we want, if there's some desire that we want to live and we imagine ourselves living that desire how close to it can we actually get? Can we get to the point where we're actually looking through our own eyes? Where we put ourselves in the scene so completely that we don't actually see ourselves? We only see the scene because we're looking through our own eyes. We're not watching it third person. We're living at first person. Or maybe there's some other bodily sensation that we key in on. But for some reason this desire for us is just a bit of a hair shirt. Just makes us itchy and twitchy and squirmy. Well, it's worthwhile spending some time with that too. Perhaps there's something unconscious in there that we believe about ourselves.
John Coleman 0:14:05
Perhaps there's some ideas about deserving, about being enough. Feeling like this desire is just too much for us. It's just too big. Or maybe there's some past experience, there's some past pain that's being triggered. Maybe we've tried to achieve and attain this desire or one like it before, and we got burned, we got injured, we were hurt in a way that made us want to put that part of ourselves under lock and key to build a barrier around it, to protect it from ever experiencing that sort of pain again. Whatever the reason, we can always work with our own discomfort. Even though something may be uncomfortable, it's still ours. It's still our discomfort. It's safe for us to explore and we can explore it as gently as we need to. We don't have to go in with sledgehammers trying to make ourselves be exactly the kind of person on the inside that we want to be immediately. We can be more gentle with ourselves, we can give ourselves more grace than that. We can nurture ourselves. We can care for ourselves rather than harshly reprimanding ourselves and demanding instant change. And so sometimes when we feel these desires and we feel that we're not really fully aligned with it yet, we're not really fully ready to be it yet. And those are the times where the mind or the body needs to catch up.
John Coleman 0:15:47
We need to find a way to bring ourselves into balance first. We need to find a way to bring ourselves into union first. So when we go out in the world and try to attain or achieve something fractionally, it's only a part of ourselves then it's a fractional experience that we'll have. It won't really have the fullness, it won't really have the richness, it won't really have the completeness that we want because we're not actually experiencing it as our whole selves. There's parts of us holding back, there's parts of us resisting it, and the feelings may even be stronger than that. There's parts of us perhaps hating it, loathing it, wanting to sabotage it, wanting it to go away as swiftly and perhaps as violently as possible. But if these desires are important to us, if we believe that a life well lived is a life lived in pursuit of our deep heartfelt desires, that's a worthy exercise, that's worthy effort to bring ourselves into alignment. That's a worthy growth project to undertake. Because if we feel uncomfortable, if we feel deeply uncomfortable with what we really want, odds are we've already tried to talk ourselves out of it. Odds are we've already tried to deny it. Odds are we've already tried to suppress and repress the part of ourselves that wants whatever this is. We've put our hearts in a box. We've tried to bury our desires under practicality, under logic, under doubt, under disbelief. But this just causes stagnation within us. This causes a shrinking, a lessening within us.
John Coleman 0:17:48
When we lock away what we really want, we're not really living with our whole selves. We're squandering and sabotaging the opportunity to really be able to be whole, to really be able to be free, to really be able to be open, to really be able to live a life of full expression of our full selves. On some level we're not really living a true life, at least not a capital t true life because we're denying parts of ourselves, we're denying parts of the truth. And we'll never live a full life. We'll never live the full, rich, deep, meaningful, rewarding life that we want to unless that life is lived in truth. There's no way around this. There's no way to shortcut this. There's no trick we can pull. There's no manipulation we can get over in life. We can't do it through effort or force. We can't do it through manipulation and guile. We actually have to be honest. We actually have to live truth where we find it. So these desires within us, these true loves within us are worthy of finding their way to expression, of finding their way to the expression that actually fits us. That's the right expression, that's the right idea, that's the right timing, that's the right thing in our lives because it can be so easy to ignore these feelings.
John Coleman 0:19:36
It can be so easy to trade these desires away. It can be so easy to diminish and dim our own life because we're diminishing and dimming our own light in a lot of ways. Desire is the propellant that moves us through life. Desire is the energy that feeds and sustains us, that keeps us going. The life we want must first be wanted. And it's that want that not only leads us to it, it's that want that propels us to it and through it. It's the fuel that we run on. And we can convince ourselves that things like willpower or fear are adequate fuels. I think we all know they're not. They're very poor substitutes for living a life fueled by desire, fueled by want, fueled by love. And this is the choice all of us get to make. We choose which fuel we run on. We choose which ideas we entertain and which ideas we reject. We choose what we pursue. We choose what we avoid.
John Coleman 0:21:02
This is our freedom. This is our agency and we get to pick. But if there's something deep down, if there's some deep heartfelt desire, if there's some truth deep within us that is yet to be acknowledged, that is yet to be made real, that is yet to be made manifest, then that's worthy of trying. And if we find ourselves, if we find any part ourselves out of alignment with this desire, then it's worthy. It's a worthy exercise. It's worth the effort to bring ourselves into alignment with our full selves. To look at our life and have our life match the feeling and the spirit of this desire now to start living out the way we would live this desire now doesn't mean it's going to instantly come to us. Might mean it doesn't ever come to us, but we can at least align with it. We can at least be the kind of person that is this. We can at least bring our being, bring our expression, bring our experience into alignment with this idea, this desire, this vision, this dream, and start living that way now. Because ultimately, that's what we want. We want to live an experience that feels the way this desire feels and we can find that we can actually feel that way now. If we start living that way now, doesn't mean we have to actually change anything. It definitely doesn't mean we need to do anything rash or irresponsible. What we're looking for is alignment.
John Coleman 0:23:03
What we're looking for is congruence. What we're looking for is a match between how our desire feels and how we live our life. And we can do that. We can lean in that direction now. We can adopt and assume that now because a life well lived is a life lived in balance. A life well lived is a life lived in union. Life well lived is a life lived fully through who we actually are, what we actually want, and the life that we actually want to live.